ARREST AND TRIAL 169 because Su^ Tungpo believed that, being the accused, he should not appear in his official gown. Mr. Tsu was of the opinion, however, that -before he was formally accused he should still appear according to his rank. Tungpo therefore also put on his gown and boots and stood with the ceremonial tablet in the middle of the courtyard, facing the official, •while Mr. Tsu and the staff lined up behind him with small turbans on their heads. The two soldiers who held the message of the censorate in their hands hugged the package as if it contained a sword. The grim silence of the official messenger caused an unbearable suspense. It was Su who spoke first. "I know I have done many things to anger the court. I am sure this is a sentence for my death. I don't mind dying, but please allow me to go home to say farewell to my family." The official, Huangfu Chun, replied curtly: "It is not so bad as that." Then the deputy magistrate advanced a step. "I am sure there is an official message." "Who is he?" asked Huangfu Chun, and the deputy magistrate told him who he was. The soldiers then formally handed over the message to the deputy magistrate. On opening it, he found that it was only an ordinary message depriving Su Tungpo of his office as magistrate and summoning him to the capital The official messenger asked him to start at once. ^ Su Tungpo was permitted to go home and see his family before he started. According to the record in his own journal, the whole family was weeping. Su Tungpo laughingly told them the following story to cheer them up: In the reign of Chentsung, the Emperor was looking for great scholars living in retirement. Somebody recommended a scholar by the name of Yang Pu. Greatly against his own wish, Yang Pu was escorted to the court and presented to the Emperor. "I hear you write poetry," said the Emperor. "No, I don't," said Yang Pu, who was trying to conceal his talent and desperately trying to keep out of politics. "Didn't some of your friends give you some poems when they were sending you off?" asked the Emperor again. "No," replied Yang Pu. "Only my wife wrote one." "What is that poem, may I ask?" said His Majesty, So Yang Pu recited for the Emperor the poem that his wife had given him on his departure. The poem was: "Don't be too greedy for the cup, Please stop fussing over poetry. Today you are arrested under guard, This time you'll lose your upper storey."